Guest Post: Richard Terrell, Professor of Art Emeritus, Doane College, Crete, Nebraska — Independence Day had me listening to the Morning Show on a major Omaha radio station, KFAB. The host, Scott Voorhees, was reporting on a new study by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, or START. The study, “Hot Spots of Terrorism and Other Crimes in the United States, 1970-2008, was at the result of a $12 million grant from DHS.
The study defined “domestic terrorists” as both of the left-wing variety and the right-wing variety. Interestingly, it never mentioned the Muslim or Islamic variety. Among the definitions of “right[wing terrorists” are those who are reverent of individual liberty and suspicious of centralized federal authority. Under such a definition, the Founding Fathers might have been considered right-wing!
Inasmuch as I would fit the description perfectly, I assume I am now a suspicious person under the definitions set forth by the present federal administration. I am also aware that in America today, a blog post like this might be a very risky behavior.
Anyway, here is what the program host reported:
If you have ever attended a Tea Party meeting, you are a suspect person (I have, and indeed found them to be distributing dangerous printed materials, most prominently copies of the Constitution of the United States of America and the Declaration of Independence).
If you own gold in your financial portfolio (I do not); if you hoist an American flag on your house (I do on national holidays), you are a “domestic terrorist.”
If you profess allegiance to the United States and its political sovereignty above internationalist, global laws and institutions (I would assume that this might be evident in artistic works such a poetry, painting, cartoons, or prose), you are again, suspect.
If you have ever expressed concern about the power of organizations such as the Council on Foreign Relations (generally dismissed as “conspiracy theory.” I have taught a college course in these matters, so I guess I would be suspect under according to this study).
This is not funny, nor am I writing satire here. The fourth of July, of course, is a good day to be reading the Declaration of Independence, but. if you do it in public, I guess you should be careful in today’s America.